Ben Aronson

Professor, Biology


Ph.D Biochemistry, Purdue University, 1990;

B.A. Biology, Williams College, 1983.


Biology, Appleton Hall
P: 909.748.8734
P: 909-748-8920

Office Hours: Variable; depends on semester.

Areas of Expertise

My research interests focus on the study of Wolbachia, a bacterium that infects numerous insect species and causes a variety of reproductive disturbances. Other areas of interest and expertise include immunology, genetics and molecular biology.


Current research is aimed at understanding the transmission of Wolbachia between unrelated individuals. This bacteria is known to be transmitted from mother to offspring but recent reports suggest that the bacteria may also be able to infect unrelated individuals within or between species. In the last 10 years, numerous undergraduate researchers have contributed to this project and have presented their findings at the annual Southern California Conference for Undergraduate Research.

Previous research has emphasized the genetics and molecular genetics of development. One research project examined the role of a particular gene (runt) on the embryogenesis and sex determination of the fruit fly Drosophila. Another project examined the role of the Neurospora gene frequency in the establishment and maintenance of circadian rhythms.

Courses Offered at Redlands

  • Biology 131

  • Biology 345

  • Biology 106

  • Biology 107

  • REST 260

Professional Experience

Postdoctoral Research: Dartmouth Medical School, Department of Biochemistry
Postdoctoral Research: SUNY Stony Brook, Department of Biochemistry

Awards, Honors and Grants

  • Outstanding Teaching Award, University of Redlands, 2002

  • NSF CCLI (A and I) Grant Award (Proposal # 0088113), 2001-2004

  • NIH Postdoctoral Research Fellowship, 1991-1993

  • American Cancer Society Postdoctoral Research Fellowship (awarded but declined)

  • David Ross Research Fellowship, Purdue University, 1987-1989


Aronson, B.D. and Silveira, L.A. in press. From genes to proteins to behavior: a laboratory project that enhances student understanding in cell and molecular biology. Life Sci. Ed.

Blanchard, R., Cooperrider, J, and Aronson, B.D. 2009. Investigation into horizontal transmission of Wolbachia in Drosophila melanogaster. Southern California Conference for Undergraduate Research, Dominguez Hills, CA.

Cooperrider, J., and Aronson, B.D. 2008. Investigation into horizontal transmission of Wolbachia in Drosophila melanogaster. Southern California Conference for Undergraduate Research, Pomona, CA.

Yates, T., Evans, H, and Aronson, B.D. 2007. Investigation of the potential for horizontal transmission of Wolbachia in Drosophila. Southern California Conference for Undergraduate Research, Los Angeles, CA.

Ruiz, S. and Aronson, B.D. 2004. Toxicity of tetracycline in Drosophila melanogaster. Southern California Conference for Undersgraduate Research. Whittier, CA.

Aronson, B.D., Fisher, A.L. Blechman, K., Caudy, M., and Gergen, J.P. 1997. Groucho dependent and independent repression activities of Runt domain proteins. Mol Cell Biol 17: 5581-5587.

Dunlap, JC, Loros, JJ, Aronson, B.D., Merrow, M., Crosthwaite, S., Bell-Pedersen, D., Johnson, K., Lindgren, K., and Garceau, N.Y. The genetic basis of the circadian clock: identification of frq and FRQ as clock components in Neurospora. 1995/ Ciba Foundation Symposium. 183: 3-17.

Aronson, B.D., Johnson, K.A., and Dunlap, J.C. 1994. The circadian clock locus frequency: Protein encoded by a single open reading frame defines period length and temperature compensation. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 91:7683-7687.

Aronson, B.D, Johnson, K.A., Loros, J.J., and Dunlap, J.C. 1994. mRNA cycling and feedback repression of a circadian clock gene. Science 263: 1578-1584.

Aronson, B.D., Dunlap, J.C., and Loros, J.J. 1994. An efficient method for gene disruption in Neurospora crassa. Mol. Gen. Genet. 242: 490-494.